Skip to Main Content
The Internet would be more efficient and robust if routers could flexibly divide traffic over multiple paths. Often, having one or two extra paths is sufficient for customizing paths for different applications, improving security, reacting to failures, and balancing load. However, support for Internet-wide multipath routing faces two significant barriers. First, multipath routing could impose significant computational and storage overhead in a network the size of the Internet. Second, the independent networks that comprise the Internet will not relinquish control over the flow of traffic without appropriate incentives. In this article, we survey flexible multipath routing techniques that are both scalable and incentive compatible. Techniques covered include: multihoming, tagging, tunneling, and extensions to existing Internet routing protocols.
Date of Publication: March-April 2008